Snow and sleet in northern England but rain expected in west

Parts of northern England have woken to a dusting of snow while the western areas of the UK are in for a wet afternoon.

Met Office forecaster Matthew Box said snow has fallen across western parts of Scotland and northern England overnight with showers causing sleet to develop in the South West.

A windy day is forecast for the rest of the country with the South West and South Coast in for a particularly breezy day with wind gusts expected to peak at 50mph, Mr Box said.

Police have issued warnings to motorists in some areas of northern England after a fresh covering of snow left vehicles stranded.

North Yorkshire Police said the A170 at Sutton Bank, Thirsk, was closed overnight and reported problems on the A59 Harrogate to Skipton road, in the Yorkshire Dales.

One traffic officer wrote on Twitter: “Blubberhouses is particularly treacherous with a number of vehicles stuck or stranded so please take care or use the A65.”

Further south, police warned of snowy conditions on the M62 at its highest point between Greater Manchester and West Yorkshire.

There were also reports of a covering of snow in Cumbria and over on the east coast near Scarborough.

The Met Office has issued three yellow weather warnings for ice in Northern Ireland, the east coast from Sheffield up to Perth in central Scotland and northern Wales until 11am on Sunday.

Frequent rain is expected in western parts of the UK on Sunday with a sunny day forecast for the east.

Mr Box said the showers are expected to die off overnight and Monday should be a drier day.

Speaking about Monday morning, Mr Box said: “There will be good spells of sunshine across much of the UK.”

This dry spell will last until Monday afternoon when rain is forecast in the south, which should hit London in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

“We will see persistent rain overnight into Tuesday,” he said.

While the forecast for Christmas is still unclear, Mr Box said a low pressure system could bring unsettled windy weather followed by “crisper” and more settled weather.

“Whether we see an unsettled windy and wet Christmas or a dry and perhaps sunny Christmas Day remains to be seen,” he said.